Winton woman jailed after allegedly siccing her pit bull on deputies

A 56-year-old Winton woman is in jail after allegedly siccing her pit bull on Merced County sheriff's deputies Wednesday.

Rebecca Bruffy was taken into custody after the incident was reported around 2:30 p.m. at her home in the 7000 block of Nicholas Place. Deputies were forced to shoot the dog to death after it charged at them, according to Deputy Tom MacKenzie, sheriff's spokesman.

Before Wednesday's incident, Bruffy's neighbors had been complaining they'd been attacked by the dog. One neighbor even required treatment at Emanuel Medical Center after being bitten a week ago, MacKenzie said.

Because of the ongoing problems with Bruffy's dog, animal control officers asked deputies to accompany them to her residence. When deputies Ken Jew and Will Hibdon and animal control officers arrived, Bruffy was sitting in a chair in her front lawn and became agitated at them, MacKenzie said.

They asked her several times to bring the dog out peacefully, and it appeared as if she would comply. Bruffy grabbed a leash and went into the house with the deputies. Once inside the house, Bruffy looked directly at Jew, then opened the door to another room, according to MacKenzie.

Barking and snarling, the dog came out of the room and charged at Jew. With less than 10 feet to act, both deputies pulled their service weapons and shot the dog, killing it, MacKenzie said.

Bruffy immediately ran and barricaded herself in her bathroom and began yelling at the deputies that she had "military training." After several minutes of negotiations, the deputies were able to get Bruffy to surrender.

She was booked into the Merced County Jail of suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon. She's being held in lieu of $30,000 bail.

Reporter Victor A. Patton can be reached at (209) 385-2431 or vpatton@mercedsun-star.com